Reports: Lionel Messi warns Barcelona star after defeat in La Liga opener

Reports: Lionel Messi warns Barcelona star after defeat in La Liga opener

Reports suggest that Lionel Messi is not happy with Barcelona star Ousmane Dembele’s dip in form and that he warned the Frenchman following a below-par display against Athletic Bilbao in the La Liga on Friday.

Don Balon reports that Lionel Messi – who remained sidelined due to a Grade-1 injury on his calf – was very unhappy at Barcelona’s performance – the biggest of his disappointments being Ousmane Dembele.

The young French winger lost ball possession on a number of opportunities and failed to launch attacks properly.

According to the Spanish news agency, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner has warned Dembele that he needs to step up his game he needs more of him this season, especially after Coutinho’s departure to Bayern Munich.

Ernesto Valverde’s men went into the contest with a whole lot of confidence, but hosts Bilbao suppressed the visitors well throughout the game which was also the first match of the 2019-20 La Liga season.

Barcelona managed just a single shot on target throughout the ninety minutes. They suffered from slight bits of misfortune as well, as one each of Suarez’ and Rafinha’s shots hit the post after evading the Bilbao goalkeeper.

And eventually, in the 89th minute, Bilbao’s 38-year-old veteran striker Aritz Aduriz broke the deadlock with a well-executed overhead kick and also helped the hosts gain all three points from the game.